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Brexit Update: UK Parliament Suspended Until Mid-October, Johnson Preps To Leave EU

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Brexit Update: UK Parliament Suspended Until Mid-October, Johnson Preps To Leave EU

U.K. Parliament has officially been suspended or “prorogued” until Oct. 14. The move has been met with protests from some MPs who were against the suspension.

The decision comes after Prime Minister Boris Johnson’s bid to call a snap election in October was defeated for a second time. The opposition MPs in Parliament refused to back it, insisting a law blocking a no-deal Brexit must be enacted first, the BBC reported.

Pantomime Politics

Commenting on the atmosphere in Parliament, BBC assistant political editor Norman Smith said: "the uproar in Parliament wasn't just Pantomime politics - there is genuine fury and incredulity that at such a crucial moment for the nation, the place is being shut down."

Johnson will now use the time Parliament is suspended to press on with negotiating a deal with the EU while still "preparing to leave without one." 

U.K. law states that the country will leave the EU Oct. 31 as expected, regardless of whether there is a deal. 

But the BBC reports the new legislation granted royal assent on Monday changes that, and will force the prime minister to seek a delay until Jan. 31, 2020 unless a deal — or a no-deal exit — is approved by MPs by Oct. 19. 

Earlier Tuesday, Johnson recorded a short interview with Sky News on his visit to a primary school in London. In the interview, he dismissed accusations that proroguing Parliament for five weeks is anti-democratic.

“We need a Queen’s speech. That’s why parliament is in recess now, because you always have a recess before a Queen’s speech. And anybody who says - this stuff about it being anti-democratic - I mean, donnez-moi un break. What a load of nonsense," the prime minister said. 

"We were very, very clear that if people wanted a democratic moment, if they wanted an election, we offered it to the Labour opposition, and mysteriously they decided not to go for it.” 

Parliament is usually prorogued before a Queen’s speech but this five-week prorogation is longer than usual.

UK Economy Regaining Hope

There has been a lot of market noise on currency pairs linked to the GBP, especially the GBP/EUR and the GBP/USD. Market volatility remains due to the lack of clarity around Brexit.

“The state of the British economy is utterly remarkable given the political mayhem,” said Marc-André Fongern, an analyst at MAF Global.

"The pound sterling may therefore be regaining some hope! Nevertheless, the burgeoning optimism continues to be accompanied by numerous imponderables as Boris Johnson's arbitrariness inevitably leads to ongoing concerns among investors." 

Other notable happenings in the U.K. involve the investment bank Goldman Sachs hiring Theresa May's chief Brexit negotiator Olly Robbins, who will join after a sabbatical.

Price Action

The iShares MSCI United Kingdom Index (NYSE: EWU) was up 0.44% at the time of publication Thursday, while the Vanguard FTSE Europe ETF (NYSE: VGK) was up 0.11%.

Related Links:

Brexit Update: UK's Prime Minister Loses Majority Support
'No End In Sight:' Boris Johnson's Brexit Prep Breaks The Pound, No-Deal Scenario Likely

Posted-In: BBC Boris Johnson Brexit Sky NewsNews Politics Media General Best of Benzinga

 

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